Sunday, May 22, 2016

Biscuit After Surgery

Biscuit recovered from Surgery and went on to lead what I think is the best life we could have possibly given him. He had a terrible swish in his hind legs when he walked so we knew that if arthritis kicked in it wouldn't be pretty. No one ever knew for certain how old Biscuit was when he was rescued - the guesstimate was 8 or 9. But who knows? He was up there for sure though he still had loads of life in him. He loved, loved, loved to walk. He would take his leash off the hook and bring it to us. The first 2 years we had him, I lost my job so I was home for during that time trying to make a career of freelance writing. In that time, the bond Biscuit and I had was not something very easy to describe. It was different from Bali and Bella. I suppose a lot of it had to do with the horrible life he had before he got to us. He was fixated on me, definitely my dog. He loved us both but no doubt his loyalty was to me. Given his age, I knew we wouldn't have him for a long time. I tried to imagine life without him (I'm morbid that way) but I couldn't. Can you ever, really? Imagine it, I mean. Turns out we had him for 6 six years in all and the end was something I would rather forget if I could.

Saturday, May 21, 2016


The head of Rosie Animal Adoption told me that when Biscuit was rescued, it was from one of the worst and most notorious puppy mills in Quebec (more on Quebec puppy mills another time). That said, it was a government agency that intervened on the rescue and the case was so hush hush, that no information about Biscuit could be released as it was before the courts. All I was told was that Biscuit was in very bad shape when rescued - he was so fat he could hardly walk (either puppy mills free feed or barely feed at all I was told), he had ear mites, eye infections, his teeth were get the picture. It also seems as though he may have lived in someone's home as he knew all his basic commands for sit, down, stay...upon rescue, he was transported to a vet in the city of Lasalle, where he was cleaned up and neutered. When we picked him up from the couple fostering him and got him home, he attached himself right to me. It was clear he had never been on furniture as when invited up he didn't seem to know what to do. Didn't take him long to figure it out. There was something really weird though: he had a very large testicle that was hanging from his back end. It was never quite explained to us and I couldn't understand it since he had been neutered. We took him into to see our own vet and at the time, he had a student following him around the office. He took him aside to discuss the testicle but left it at that, so we left the vet's office and didn't think anything of it. I woke up Christmas morning to find Biscuit lying in the living room panting. He had also gone to the bathroom in the house - unusual given we were told and saw for ourselves how clean he was. The testicle was also really hot. I called my sister-in-law (hubby was working) to pick me up and take him to the 24 emergency vet. When we got there I called Rosie's and they said no matter what it is, they would pay for it and they would get there as quick as they could. When the vet examined him, I was told he was going into septic shock and that whoever neutered him had botched the job. Rosie's arrived and the vet gave us 2 scenarios: they do surgery and if the infection has moved into his abdomen, they may not be able to save him. If the infection hasn't moved, it would likely be a good outcome. Cost: close to $4000. Rosie's said they are in the business of saving animals so go ahead and do the surgery. I don't know how we would have done it, but we would have found the money even though Biscuit had only been with us 3 days. I was already attached. There was no Go Fund at that time. Biscuit had the best possible outcome: infection hadn't moved and they were able to clean him up and remove that unsightly testicle. No climbing or jumping for a while so I set up a mattress in the living room and slept with him and Bella there. Here is Biscuit after Surgery and with Bella on the mattress - Biscuit is on the mattress and Bella is half on half off lol

Death of your Dog

If you're anything like me when it comes to dogs you have had that have died, you think that when they do go, there can never possibly be another that you will feel as close to or love more than you did the one before. I have had 3 dogs and I know that that's what I thought every time one of them died. Bali and Bella were the first. They were a male and female black and blonde Lab respectively. They died about 6 months apart. They were both 14 years old. I had never intended to have to go through that so close together, but when you rescue a dog, their age is their age. As it turns out, Bella, the rescued one, was only 6 months younger than Bali. It's going on about 7 years now since they both went to Rainbow Bridge. What a wonderful notion that is, the Bridge. A place where all dogs go after they die, where they are free of any and all pain they may have suffered. Where they can run free to their heart's content. Where the saying goes, that they will meet you there too one day. I don't know what I believe in after death...I want to believe there's something. I wish I could know for sure...if it Rainbow Bridge, or something like it, well, what more is there to say?
After Bali and Bella, came our blond Lab Biscuit. I remember the first time the vet saw him, he said, wow, he's about a 1000 biscuits! He was a big boy, no doubt. Biggest Lab I ever saw. Close to 100 pounds when we got him. Outside of the SPCA, I didn't know much about dog rescue. I mean, I guess I knew that these organizations existed but I just never paid much attention. Rosie Animal Adoption came to me not long after Bali's death. We still had Bella but while she was still with us, her age had caught up to her and she was a shell of her old self. I guess with Bali being my first dog, having had him from the time he was 8 weeks old and having been with me through so many heart aches and difficulties, it only deepened the grief I felt when he died. I started looking online for another male Lab, maybe a week into Bali's death. I don't know what it was I was looking for just that I felt like I needed another dog as quickly as possible. I wasn't trying to erase Bali's memory or replace him (or maybe I was) but I was so distraught I felt like if I had the distraction of another dog to care for, the pain might not be so bad. I came upon Biscuit's picture and told my husband that this was the one. He said how can you know that, you never even met him. I said I just know. I placed a call to Rosie's and after they vetted me, I was told I could go and pick Biscuit up. I remember being a little surprised there was no meet and greet with the dog first but at that time, if you were the right adopter in their eyes, the dog was yours. And so it was that Biscuit became ours just 3 days before Christmas.